Growing Online Dating Relationships Just like regular real-world relationships, online relationships need tending, to grow over time. Here are some quick growing tips. 1. Take time and make time. Does your online date get in touch with you regularly? Do you do the same? Neglecting virtual meetings can be considered abuse or neglect, so treat each other's time with respect. If it's lacking, might mean time to move on. 2. Communication needs to "feel" right for both of you. If one of you is too pushy about meeting, for instance, that can give off bad vibes. So don't rush. Take time to learn more about each other and develop trust. 3. Respect each others privacy. Don't share personal email addresses or digital photos online, for example, if your online date sent you the information in confidence. 4. Share special online and offline fun times. Online -- send greeting cards, links to favorite places to upload digital photos of your favorite pet, download music and video clips, post on favorite forums of interest. Offline- if you're exchanging addresses or post office boxes, send print greeting cards and postcards, small items from your area (like a key chain with your state bird). Tend your online relationship. Water it with care and over time it can sprout and grow. More Popular Online Dating Activities A couple of popular online activities are sharing recipes and bidding at auctions. And both of these easily fit well into online dating opportunities, one of the most popular online activities for singles today. To help many dates get better acquainted online, here's what potential cyber-dates do. Sharing Recipes -- People get tired talking about the weather. So a popular subject to turn to is food. Sharing favorite foods and recipes helps break the ice and even forms friendships over culinary skills -- or lack of -- and tastes. Search your favorite search engine for "free recipes" to share. Take photos of your culinary creations and share them with your date, too. Bidding at Auctions -- Ebay auctions sell nearly anything and everything! So surf around and enter searches like the dates you were in middle school. Share cool memorabilia photos of old games and toys from when you were a child or when your parents or grandparents were little; The Dating Game, Oscar Mayer wiener whistles, The Partridge Family Album, Bobby Sherman's Album, 45's and more. Online dating can be an educational and fun experience. So learn more about each other and have fun while you're at it. Take a cyber-stroll down memory lane together and see what's cookin'. Popular Online Dating Activities All types of everyday activities are growing in popularity online these days like sharing photos and greeting cards. In fact, both of these even go hand in hand with online dating opportunities, one of the most popular online activities for singles today. Before actually meeting in person, many dates get acquainted online first. Here's how. Photos -- As a wonderful keepsake of your budding romance, create an online photo album for your new cyber-mate. Include digital photos of favorite outdoor scenes, pets, flowers, cars, silly moments, your computer corner or laptop, etc. Then you'll even have more to discuss during online dates via emails and chat rooms. Search for "photo albums" to find places that store your photos. Greeting Cards- Regardless of where the person lives, you can mail a greeting card. If privacy and security is an issue, check into renting an inexpensive P.O. Box (check the Yellow Pages). You do not have to be an artist to make something homemade and special for the new friend in your life. Even making a special, personalized greeting card would be appreciated and show your date that you care enough to take the time needed to make something by hand. Search your favorite search engine for online greeting cards to send, too. They range from free to low cost and can be sent in a click. So get online and get active! No need to risk meeting in person until you get more familiar with each other online first. So take the online plunge! Popular Online Dating Activities For Men Heads up, gents. Online dating can open up new doors of opportunities with a little help from real world dating tips that work. Spice up your matchmaking with some of these ideas. Looks Count Comment on how attractive she is. Yes, women do want to know they are pretty, even if they're online and you can't see them and have no idea. So in your communications, ask questions that would help you know, but in an unobtrusive way like -- how do you wear your hair? And then say how attractive that must look. Kindness Counts Point out nice things or the lemonade in life -- nice things the other person has mentioned, nice acts the person has done, good things on the news latterly, etc. Be upbeat, and forget those lemons in life. Even in email a person can shout, by using all capital letters. So show manners and kindness. Keep swearing, unkind remarks, prejudice, etc. out of your communications. And "do unto others..." So add some helpful real-world tips that do work (a lot of the time anyway) into your online dating equations. And come up on the positive side of romance -- and enjoy more lemonade! A Man's Secrets to Successful Online Dating People have taken to online dating like a duck takes to water -- because it works -- or, at least, it can work. Women are, in general, terrified of meeting a man that she has been chatting with online. All they have heard about are the scary things that can happen -- and, I must say, they have a right to be careful to the extreme. That's not only wise but vital. So what's a nice guy to do? You aren't a pervert, a sexual predator, or a weirdo. You are just a nice guy looking for "the" girl for you. You must be patient. Don't press her for personal information like her real name or where she lives. Keep your conversations light and fun until she feels comfortable talking with you online. Don't try to rush her into meeting face-to-face. She will think you are desperate or a pervert. Patience. Patience. Patience. Be absolutely honest about your physical appearance and job. A good relationship has never been, and will never be, built on lies and deceit. Eventually she will find out the truth anyway and there you are back at square one. A picture really is worth a thousand words. Post many pictures of yourself doing your everyday activities and make them full body shots, not just head shots. If you were dating a girl in the real world she wouldn't just see your head. Once the discussion has been opened about meeting face-to-face for the first time, suggest that you meet in a very public place, during daylight hours and that she bring a friend with her. After all, you have nothing to hide. You've told her the truth about yourself and she has already seen a lot of pictures of you. The only thing left is to make her feel safe meeting you. Ask the Right Questions First OK. You have joined a couple of dating services and written a killer profile. You've uploaded a good picture and now you are going to chat with a contact. What now? How do you start separating those who have real potential and those who don't have any potential at all? You need to find out something about who this strange woman really is and not just who she wants you to believe she is. It would be nice if women wore labels like "Gold Digger" or "Daddy's girl" -- but they don't so it's up to you to find these things out and you can't just ask direct questions. You need to know what mistakes you can avoid making and how to impress this lady if you decide you want to do that. After you are past the initial small talk, ask her, "What are the biggest mistakes guys make when dating online?" Listen carefully to her answers. She's going to tell you a lot about herself and her views on men in general. Next you should ask her, "What do you really think about online dating?" Now she will tell you if she has had any bad experiences dating o line and help you to avoid making the same things wrong. Now for the all-important one -- "What caused the break up in your last relationship?" If she puts all the blame on the guy, you should probably move on to the next prospect. If she takes all the blame herself, you should probably do the same. If she says the breakup was by mutual consent or that the relationship just wasn't right for either of them, you've heard the right answer. Move forward but always with caution. Asking the right questions will give you insight and make you more confident when you meet the lady for the first time. Honesty Really is the Best Policy When you join an online dating service, you are looking for a girl that you can like -- even come to love. That girl is looking for a guy that SHE can like or even love. What you aren't looking for is a girl who would like your best friend or your idea of what the perfect guy looks like or talks like or thinks like. So, in order to find the right girl for you -- and she IS out there -- you need to be completely honest with yourself about yourself when writing the online profile, during the dating process and beyond. The best way to begin writing your profile is to carefully analyze your past relationship (s). What was right? What was wrong? What things really made you like the last girl? Which didn't? Don't assume that just because you hated that your last girl was so totally self-involved that she couldn't see anything else, you'll be able to overlook that quality this time. You won't. If you aren't 6'1" with a six-pack to be proud of, don't claim to be. If you are a bar tender, don't claim to be a lawyer with a six figure income. If you are 40 going on 50, don't pretend to be 30 something. Remember, the idea here is to find a girl who will like you exactly like you are. If you have lied in your profile, the first face-to-face meeting will remove all her doubt that you are a liar -- and probably a cheat, as well. Lastly, once you have found a girl that you believe can be the one for you, for goodness sakes, cancel your membership to the online dating service. After all, you know and she knows that online dating services are intended for those who are looking -- not those who have found or been found. Nice Guys Do It, Too! I'm talking about online dating, of course. When the phenomenon of online dating sites started several years ago, they were a haven for perverts, sexual predators, nerds, and weirdoes of assorted varieties. That is just no longer the case. All the stigma of online dating is gone. Online dating has gone main stream and is, not only acceptable, but expected. Online dating has become the primary tool of single people of all ages to generate an interesting and rewarding social life. Let's face it -- we are busy guys. We just simply do not have the time, the energy, or the financial where-with-all to date several nights each week while we look for the "one". You can sort through hundreds of profiles in a month for less money than you would spend on one evening out, thus, saving time and money. We use the internet to save ourselves time and money for a lot of things like investments, shopping, medical information, and communications. Why not make use of such a useful tool for our social and personal lives as well? You could find the love of your life. At the very least, you will meet some interesting people and possibly make some lasting friendships. It's easy to get started. All you need is a computer and an internet connection. You'll need to search for online dating services that meet your specific needs. They are many and varied. Join one or two. Then you'll need to write a great profile, upload a recent picture of yourself and start making and answering contacts. That really is all there is to it -- that and patience. Don't wait any longer to start your new and interesting social life. Miss or Ms. "Right" could be only a few clicks of the mouse away. Online Dating Can Be Tough Here's a little secret that those of the female persuasion keep from us guys: Women, even very beautiful women, like to be approached by a confident and interesting man. Are you surprised? It's true -- and confident and interesting are much more important than looks to ladies of all ages, too. That's true for internet dating, as well as, dating in your brick and mortar world but we're talking about internet dating here -- so back to the subject at hand. Once you have joined an online dating service, you will find that there a lot more men than women and that the men are much more likely to browse profiles and make initial contacts than women. Yes, it's a woman's world -- still. It's "traditional" for men to make the first move. It always has been and it always will be. Some things never change. That's why your profile and picture are so important. Remember -- confident and interesting -- and that does not translate to cocky and self-centered. It's important that your profile lets people know that you have friends you care about and that you are passionately interested in a variety of things -- not JUST sports. Another thing about that all-important profile -- please don't start it with, "I'm the guy your mama warned you about". You will have just shot yourself in the foot with that line. Another one to never use is, "I could be the man of your dreams". The lady HOPES you are but she will be the judge of that -- so don't insult her intelligence. Remember: exude confidence and interesting and you will find that lady you have been looking for -- or she will find you. Won't it be nice to have the ladies contacting you instead of you having to do everything? If you write a great profile that stands out in the crowd, that will happen. Online Dating For Single Men No matter what your age, height, weight or physical appearance, there are thousands of women out there eager to meet you and eager for your company -- whether short-term or long-term relationships are what you want. If you have found yourself suddenly "on-the-market" again after a relationship has dissolved or are just too busy with your work to spend a lot of time looking for a lady to keep you company, online dating can open the door to the dating scene for you. The good news is that all you need is a computer and an internet connection to get started. The first thing to do is find an online dating site that fits your needs. There are the large sites that offer many extras like live video chat and even match you up with ladies using your profiles and, also, a lot of sites that cater to special interests like religious preferences, outdoor enthusiasts, gays, etc. You need to choose one or two that will meet your needs. I don't recommend the free sites. The paid sites have a money back guarantee if you aren't satisfied and the investment is small. A whole month costs less than one dinner and movie date. The next thing you need to do is write a killer, but honest, profile and upload a recent but flattering picture of yourself. Now you are all set. Start contacting ladies whose profiles sound interesting to you and answer any lady who contacts you -- and do so promptly -- not, however, on holidays or weekends. You don't want to appear that desperate. Don't give up after a month and think you will never find the right lady for you. New people join online dating services daily and at least half of them are ladies many, of whom, will want to meet you. Online Dating is Not a Contest Online dating is not a competition between competing males for the attention of a female. Grow up. Change your mind set from "winning" to "searching". This isn't high school. You are all grown up and have been for quite some time, now. Your attitude is the most important asset you have. You should like yourself and not concentrate of all of the things that aren't YOUR idea of the perfect guy -- the one the all women want. What is that women want, you ask? That's the age old question. Being of the female persuasion myself, I can tell you a few things women want and don't want. Women want a man to be confident -- NOT an arrogant jerk. There's a big difference. You need to like yourself and not be self depreciating but you don't need to come across like you believe that you are a gift to them from God and have just fallen from the sky. They don't want you to think that THEY just fell from heaven and are some kind of perfect being, either. They can't live up to that expectation. Women want a communicator. The "strong silent type" really isn't appealing at all. They think you probably don't have an original thought in your head and you probably haven't heard a word they said, either or that you just don't care what they said or didn't even hear what they said. They want you to be interesting enough to want to know more about you and they want you to think that they are interesting enough to ask intelligent questions about what is important to them, too. Women do NOT want to be a prize to be won. They don't want to be a trophy. They want to be the ONE woman that you want to be with. Online Dating Safety For Men Almost everything you read about online dating safety is directed at women but men need to be concerned as well. Perverts, sexual predators and weirdoes come in both sexes, all sizes, and all ages -- as do, liars and cheaters. So men need to stay on guard, too. It is common knowledge not to readily give out personal information to strangers. The reason for not doing so is as large as the number of strangers who want that information. If you come across a person who is giving out personal information and asking others to do the same, don't do it. You don't know what they want to use it for -- and you had better believe they want to use it for something. That "something" will not be for your benefit. Men, also, need to guard their real names, addresses, phone numbers, and place of employment. Do not give that information to anyone online until you are confident that they are who they say they are. Men, be wary of women who seem too financially needy. If they ask for money, in any of a dozen ways women can ask for money, cut the relationship off immediately. They are not looking for love or even friendship -- they are looking for financial help. If a woman gives you a contact number but you cannot ever reach her at that number, beware. If you always have to page them or text them and have them call you back, this could be a sign that what they are telling you is not the complete truth. A need to get married and insecurity are other signs men should be very wary of. If the woman is pushing too hard for a commitment you aren't ready to make, it might be a good time to head for the nearest exit. Online Flirting -- A New Art Form Many of the same things work for online flirting that work for "brick and mortar" flirting and all relationships begin with successful flirting. Flirting is an art that requires oozing confidence without being OTT. If you go too far, she will label you "slimy" If you don't go far enough, she will label you "wimpy". So how do you achieve that point half way between slimy and wimpy and do it online without using eye contact or body language? All you have is a computer an internet connection and membership in an online dating site, right? 1. Have fun! Be light-hearted, funny and entertaining. Make her eager to talk to you again. Flirting is playful. 2. Ooze confidence. Successful flirts have a positive outlook on life. You need to transmit the "feel good" factor. An optimistic attitude attracts females like honey attracts flies. 3. 3. Compliment her -- and do it often and sincerely. Nothing opens doors like making her feel good about herself. She will want to spend more time with you and if she pays you a compliment say "thank you". Do Not be self depreciating. 4. Listen -- listen -- listen. Pay attention to what she says and ask appropriate questions. Get her to open up and talk about herself. Make her feel like she is interesting and that you are interested in her. Works wonders! 5. Don't be rude. Flirting does not include being sexually explicit nor taking offence if the lady isn't responding to you. If she isn't interested, take the hint and move on to the next prospect. If you get a lot of rejections, you should probably consider a different approach. 6. Send an email after you chat. This ranks right up there with sending a thank you note for a gift and it is vital to successful flirting. Don't try to go too fast. Flirting is the first step to a successful relationship.
3 Online Dating Mistakes to Avoid While you search the internet for that special lady -- the one of your dreams -- your soul-mate -- the other half of yourself, you can do a lot of things right. Sadly, you can, also, do a lot of things wrong -- things that will guarantee failure and a broken heart. Out in the "real" world, being aggressive, demanding perfection and even little white lies are all ingredients for success. However, those same qualities are killers when you are dating online and off line, too, for that matter. There is a big difference between being aggressive or confident and being too aggressive, over-confident, or just plain sleazy or slimy from a woman's point of view. If you push too hard for a face-to-face, you will come across as too aggressive -- maybe even, scary. Try to remember that you are not trying to close a business deal and keep the relationship progressing at a slow but steady pace. Patience is the key. Nobody is perfect. We are all flawed in some way or another -- and that includes you, as well. If you expect the woman to be absolutely perfect and demand that, you will always be disappointed. Demanding perfectionism in your work is one thing. Demanding perfectionism from a friend, co-worker or a lady you are interested in is not just fine. It won't happen. Expect flaws and just deal with them. Decide the ones you can live with and those you can't. Little white lies and false fronts won't work. Be honest from the beginning of a relationship. Write your profile. Make it interesting but don't make false statements. The truth will come out eventually anyway. If you say you are a lawyer who makes a million bucks a year and you are really an electrician that makes $75,000, you have set yourself up for failure. Remember -- don't be too aggressive, expect to ever find perfection or put on a false front. A Woman's "Don'ts" of Online Dating There are some things that women should never do while engaged in an online relationship with a man. These things are certain to put a quick and final end to any further communications with him. While chatting online or by email do not write your life story. His eyes will glaze over and he will fall out of his chair. Keep it short and sweet until he asks for details -- then provide them slowly and only answer the questions he asks. For instance -- If he asks how many siblings you have, he is NOT asking for the details of your interaction with them. He really just wants to know how many you have. Say you have 2 (or whatever is true) and then ask how many he has. For every question he asks you, you should ask one of him. Nothing turns a man off like a long- winded woman who just doesn't know when to shut up or how to listen. Never, ever, EVER lie. I really believe that lies will catch up with you sooner or later. Many women (and men) lie about their age, marital status, employment, height, weight and a host of other things in their online profiles. That is a huge mistake. If you find a man who you are really interested in, he will find out you lied and there goes any possibility of the relationship progressing. So, just be honest. There is someone out there who will like you -- even come to love you -- for exactly the person you are. Don't be too eager. It makes you look desperate and it really puts a man off. They are first and foremost conquerors and if getting the person of their desires to like them too is just too easy, they will quickly lose interest. I don't mean play "hard-to-get". I mean, don't push for a face-to-face meeting. Don't email them or IM them too frequently. Play it safe and play it cool. A Woman's Guide to Writing a Great Profile OK -- the time has come. You have joined an online dating service or two. Now you must write that all-important profile -- the one that will attract attention and reel in the man of your dreams -- but where to start? Maybe writing isn't even something you think you do all that well. Even so, you can do this. The first thing is to be absolutely honest about yourself. You are looking for that man who will like -- maybe someday love -- YOU. THE REAL YOU! Examine past relationships and list the things that you liked and the things you did not like. If he smoked in the house and you hated it, you won't like it any better the next time. If you love cats and will always want to own one or more, say that you are an animal lover and want indoor pets. Someone who hates cats or is allergic to them is not the guy for you. Accent the things that make you unique. If you play the piano well, you really want Mr. Right to appreciate it. If you run in marathons, a couch potato is not a good match. If you love art, you really don't want a man who thinks Picasso is an ice cream flavor. Describe the things that are vital in your life. If volunteering is the one thing that makes you feel useful and worthwhile, you want someone who would, at the very least, support you if not join you in your volunteer projects. When you get beyond superficial things, you will attract men who share your values. Invest in your online profile by hiring a professional photographer for your first online picture. This is so important. The picture is the FIRST thing men see. The second thing is that they read what you have written about yourself. Some online dating sites even provide you with a list of photographers in your area that specialize in online dating site photos. Blind Date vs Internet Date Your friend has decided that you need help with your social life so she sets you up with a blind date -- a friend of a friend of a friend. You, foolishly, accept. Now there you are. It's less than one hour since you were introduced. You are sitting in a Thai restaurant and you hate Thai food. The entree has not yet been served. His idea of enlightened conversation is who will be in the final four -- you aren't into sports. He knows the weekly TV schedule verbatim -- you haven't sat through a movie in months because you run marathons and volunteer at the local food bank. He says, "Volunteering is a waste of time because you can't help 'those people' anyway." You look at your watch; see that it's only been 10 minutes since you last looked at it the last time and wonder how long it is before you can gracefully remove yourself from the situation. Been there? Now imagine a date with someone you met through internet dating and have been chatting online with and exchanging emails with for quite some time. First, you don't need to be introduced. You already know this man. You are sitting in an Italian restaurant enjoying a delightful meal because you both know that the other's favorite is Italian. The conversation flows easily as you discuss common interests. He runs marathons and loves history just like you do. You happily discuss the volunteer work that each of you is involved in. You look at your watch and discover that it is late -- very late -- where Has the time gone. There is a big difference between a well-intentioned friend "setting you up" and choosing a man for yourself who shares your interests and tastes, isn't there? Now which one would you rather have? How Do I Choose the Right Site For Me? With the explosion of online dating sites has come a virtual smorgasbord of choices. There are free sites -- I don't recommend those but if money is a real concern, they are better than nothing. There are the large paid sites with many and varied features like chat, IM and even matching using profiles. There are the less expensive paid sites with few features. There are special interest sites for almost any thing you can think of...outdoor enthusiasts, couch potatoes, religious, non-religious, gays, lesbians -- like I said -- almost anything you can think of. So what's a girl to do? A girl should choose the site or sites that best fit her needs. Here are some things to consider: (1) Cost. How much do you want or how much can you spend each month for your membership(s)? (2) Features. Which features are the most important to you? (a) Profile matching systems. Is this a feature you really want or would you rather decide who is right for you all by yourself? (b) Chat and IM's? There are websites who offer chat rooms and IM's on their sites. Does that matter or would you be happy just sticking to private email. (c) Outside Events -- such as speed dating? Are you interested in that? (d) Privacy. Some websites allow you to limit who can view your picture or your profile. Does this matter to you or do you want as wide exposure as you can have? (e) Safety. There are websites who do background checks of all subscribers and certify their age, marital status and background. Would you feel safer using this feature? These are a few things but not all things you should consider when choosing an online dating service or services. Do your homework and choose wisely for the best results for you. Mr. Perfect Does Not Exist! The sooner you realize this sad but true fact, the sooner you can get on with finding Mr. Close-Enough-To-Perfect. Prince Charming, riding on a white stallion, lost his way or found Princess Charming and got married on his way to your castle. Get over it and get on with it. You ARE going to have to actively seek the man of your dreams and you won't find him hiding under your bed. You already know that he isn't among the men that you are acquainted with so, now what? Online dating is "what". It's true that online dating, while in its infancy, was only made up of perverts, sexual predators, nerds and weirdoes but that is no longer true. It has become the main tool of the single person in every developed country in the world. Forty million people can't all be wrong. Ask your girl friends if they have ever used online dating or are using it now. If they are honest with you, most of them have or are now members of at least one online dating site and maybe more than one. It really is the way to go to meet eligible men who want to meet you. It doesn't matter what any of your numbers are -- like age, height, weight or income either. Somewhere out there in the big wide world there is a man who will like you -- then love you -- and think that you are beautiful and desirable. "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" is true. What is considered beautiful in one part of the world is completely different from what is considered beautiful in another part of the world. It's even different from one part of this country to another. Find an online dating site that fits your needs. Write a great profile and post a flattering picture. Start contacting eligible men on the site. Mr. Close-enough-to-perfect could be a few mouse clicks away. Nice Girls Do It, Too! It is absolutely true that when online dating sites first started they were populated entirely by perverts, sexual predators, weirdoes, social misfits and emotional wrecks but that is no longer true. Online dating has gone mainstream and has lost all the social stigma it once suffered. Single people of all ages, races, religions and both sexes do it. Short people, tall people, thin people, obese people do it. People from every developed country in the world do it. Nice girls do it, too. The reasons people join online dating sites are as varied as the people who join but mostly they join for three very good reasons: (1) Time (2) Money, and (3) It works. Time -- You can go through hundreds of online profiles and look at hundreds of pictures in the same length of time only one real world date takes and the screening is already done for you. You can tell right away if a guy is only looking for casual relationships or long term commitments. How many times have you worked 8 hours, gone home and spent another hour getting ready to go out then gone to the local hang-out for singles only to see the same old jerks, losers and drunks that are always there? Money -- For the price of one evening out on the town you can enjoy an entire month of meeting men from the safety of your own home -- do it in your jammies or sweats and with a beauty facial working its magic. It works. It really does work if you are willing to do the right things. Write a profile that grabs attention, post recent pictures of yourself, be fun and interesting while chatting with the men you meet on line, answering emails promptly and being on time for a pre-arranged online meeting. Online Dating For the Single 30 Something Woman Life isn't fair. Men get all the breaks. You've devoted all of your 20's to getting your career off the ground. Not that you haven't been dating -- you have, but not seriously. Now here you are -- 30 something and there is no long term relationship in sight. You can actually hear your biological clock ticking. You have a precious few years to find a man to fall in love with, make him fall in love with you, get married, and have a baby or its lights out. You already know all of the men in your social circle. Not that they aren't nice guys -- some of them -- but none of them are your soul mate. What's a girl to do? Consider online dating. You have the opportunity to read hundreds of profiles and look at hundreds of pictures in search of that "someone" that will be right for you. Maybe he will live in the same city you do -- maybe he will live across the country or even in another country altogether. You aren't limited to only those men that you come in contact with personally. The possibilities are almost endless. "Is online dating safe", you ask. "Aren't the online dating sites made up entirely of perverts, sexual predators and weirdoes in assorted shapes and sizes?" the answer is, no they aren't. Not anymore anyway. That was true when online dating first came on the scene but now it is mainstream. It's as safe as you make it using common sense and sound judgment. Use the same caution that you would when meeting any stranger. Don't give your real name, address or phone number until you feel safe doing so. Don't rush into a face-to-face meeting until you are confident and then make the first meeting in a public place and during daylight hours. Give it a try -- Mr. Right might be a few mouse clicks away. Online Dating Safety for Women Online dating can be a fun and certainly a rewarding experience for women of all ages. Maintaining your safety while doing it is simply a combination of using common sense and exercising good judgment. Online safety rules are the same as real world safety rules. You wouldn't give your name, address and phone number to a strange man that you met in a bar or on the street so you should never do that online either. Play it safe. Get to know this man who could turn out to be Prince Charming before you give out any information that could make it possible for him or others to trace you. Don't tell a stranger exactly where you work. Say that you are a legal secretary (if that's what you are) for a mid-sized law firm -- not that you work for Brown, Smith and Jones Attorneys-at-law. It is safe to tell him what city you live in but you should wait to be any more specific than that until you have been chatting and exchanging emails for awhile. Use only the tools provided by the dating service you belong to. Most offer chat and private email on their site. Do not give out your isp email address. If you must give out an email address make it a free one such as Hotmail or Yahoo. Your isp address is traceable for anyone who wants to go to the trouble. When the time comes for you to have your first face-to-face, make that first meeting in a public place and during day light hours. Take a friend with you or arrange for one to call you on your cell soon after the arranged meeting. Remember -- you ARE in control so do not let anyone pressure you into revealing more personal information than you are comfortable with revealing. The Advantages of Online Dating for Women In the past, i.e. the 1990's, online dating was a brand new idea. Unlike today, most people did not own PC's or even have access to the internet. Times have changed. Online dating is not only IN the mainstream, it IS the mainstream. There are many reasons for the phenomenal growth of online dating sites and the number of people, men and women of all ages, races and religions who use them as their primary source for meeting people and looking for "the one". If you don't believe me, just ask your friends in the "real" world. If they are honest, most of them will tell you they have or are using an online dating service. Here are three good reasons why thousands of people sign up for dating services everyday: (1) You can be anonymous. You will never be required to give your real name, address, email address, phone number or place of employment to another online user. You, of course, may do so but only at your own discretion and only when you feel completely safe. You are not required to post a picture of yourself. Posting a picture, however, will get more responses to your profile. So you can surf through the other members on the dating site you have joined with complete anonymity. (2) You have so many more choices online that you do in your brick and mortar world. Before the world of online dating came of age, the choice of friends and even of lifetime partners was limited to those we came in contact with through college or work. No more -- the world is your oyster. You can go through hundreds -- even thousands of profiles to find the right man for you. (3) The "safety factor" is the biggest reason of all. An online dating service will never reveal your personal information. You get to choose who has that information and when they have it. hat Are the Odds of Finding Mr. Right Online? The odds of finding your "soul-mate" online are a lot better than you may think. It doesn't happen for everyone, of course, but it can happen for you. The world of internet or online dating has exploded over the last few years. As our lives become busier and busier we need to make better use of our time and energy in our search for the one man who will make our lives complete. The old saying, "You have to kiss a lot of frogs before you find a princess" is no longer true. Why kiss frogs when you can read hundreds of profiles and look at the pictures that go with them for a small monthly fee? That saves time and money -- not to mention lip burn. These are a few good reasons to consider online dating: (1) There is a wide range of men to choose from. You aren't limited to the men in your social circle or work environment. (2) You have the opportunity to get to know a lot about a man before you ever contact him for the first time. You will know his age, marital status, what city he lives in, whether he has children, his height/weight and his likes and dislikes all from his profile. You'll even see a picture of him. (3) You have a better chance to present yourself in a favorable way. This is especially useful for those of us who are shy. We have time to think about how we want to say things about ourselves and can avoid being tongue tied. Even those who are more extroverted can take time to reflect on who they really are before writing their online profile. (4) Online dating is certainly a time saver. You can meet so many more men in a lot less time than you ever could out in the real world.
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